The arts and #givingtuesday

P1040245So you’ve seen that #givingtuesday is coming to the UK, but you’re not sure how to get involved?

The hashtag highlights a day of action in the run up to Christmas, and was started last year in the US on the day after Black Monday, when internet sales reach their peak. It’s open to anyone, and any scale of giving – from the family who give a meal to an elderly neighbour to the corporate giants who donate to charity. It’s going to happen on 3rd December, the same day in Great Britain and the United State of America.

To be part of #givingtuesday all you have to do is talk about your act of giving on social media, and add the hashtag. Here in Great Britain, we’re not so great about talking about how we support charities, our community or just other people – so #givingtuesday should help to start an important national conversation.

Here are seven ideas that we think artists and arts organisations could try for #givingtuesday.

1. Give an hour of your time to a local school. Here at Revolutionary Arts we believe artists should be paid for working as artists in schools, but for #givingtuesday volunteer one hour to talk about working as an artist. Let’s inspire people and show them that there are careers in being creative.

2. Let’s move #freeartfriday to #givingtuesday. This project started on Flickr, and saw artists leave small works across Britain’s town and cities for other people to find. Let’s change the day, just this once, and fill the country with free art.

3. Crowdfunding is becoming a mainstream way to raise funds for a creative project. Launch yours on #givingtuesday, and reach a wider audience than your usual supporters. Let the hashtag take your campaign worldwide.

4. Do you run studios for artists? For one day, open your studio space for co-working. Invite other artists to come in, use your wifi, and access the resources you have available. It won’t cost you much and may attract future collaborators.

5. Theatres are rarely full. Give away half a dozen pairs of tickets for a show on #givingtuesday. Make sure all the people you’re giving to get to meet each other, with a free drink before the show. You could pick people who wouldn’t usually come to the theatre, or pick people with some social media influence who’ll spread the word.

6. Are you an artist? Does somebody buy your work regularly? Send them something free for #givingtuesday.

7. Can you entertain people just by standing up, with poems, a ukulele or an acoustic guitar? Take your performance to somewhere unlikely on #givingtuesday – perform at work, on the town hall steps or at the school gate. Shout the hashtag between songs or poems and become a #givingtuesday evangelist.

However you decide to join in with #givingtuesday, let us know on Twitter and Facebook so we can spread the word.

Make yourself a sign or a T-shirt with the hashtag, too, and make it really prominent while you’re giving so that other people can hashtag their comments on social media as well.

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